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Showing posts from August, 2008

Sensitive Shih-Tzus

Life became a bit topsy-turvey for the boys when grandma recently moved into our home.

We got a call last week after she had fallen on her outside steps. It turned out she had a concussion, smashed up her knee and broke her shoulder. Because the hospital wouldn't release her unless she had somewhere to go where she had 24 hour care, we decided she would move in with us since we have no other family in the city. And we were not going to leave her alone in a hospital. We also had to put her house up for sale as she could not go back and live on her own again given her age, the size of the house and the enormous number of stairs she had to tackle each day.

During this process the boys have been extremely sensitive to her needs when they are around her. She spends most of her days in a chaise in the family room watching TV, doing puzzles and talking on the phone to her friends. However, from the day we brought her home the dogs sensed that something was wrong - Grandma wasn't bendin…

Just another word about ticks...

A couple of things I forgot to mention in the last post.

There are two schools of thought on removing the tick. There is the medical way that doctors promote and the "old-fashioned" ways that have been passed down to us for generations from the country folk because there was no doctor around.

Some of the old-fashioned ways include burning the tick with a matchhead (not recommended with your furry animal!!) or coating the tick with paint, nail polish or gasoline. Again, not recommended! The idea behind petroleum jelly (like Vaseline) is that it's commonly found in most homes, it's completely harmless and, when applied to the tick, it suffocates it.

The old way includes soaping your fingers with a regular bar of soap (and I really don't know why we are supposed to do it...this is what I was taught by others), grabbing the tick and slowly pulling it away.

The medical way advises using a pair of tweezers. Apparently they want you to twist the tick onto its back so it doe…

Treating Ticks

When dogs spend more time outside, they are susceptible to a greater number of problems. And one of the biggest problems facing dogs are ticks.

These ugly, blood-sucking leeches grab hold of your dog and are difficult to get rid of. The most insidious aspect of the tick is even when you think you've removed it, often you haven't because the head is still embedded in your dog's skin. As long as the head is still attached and sucking blood, this loathsome insect will actually grow another body.

So how do you get rid of them?

Well, our Bruiser had a tick on his back earlier this summer. My husband felt something when he was patting him and, after parting the fur, found the tick. He soaped his fingers and slowly started withdrawing the tick from Bruiser's body. Once he had it, he threw it in an ashtray and burned it and thought that was that.

A couple of days later, a lump began developing where my husband removed the tick. The day after we noticed it, the lump was even bigger…

The boys go to the beach

We have a cozy little cottage at the beach where we like to escape whenever city life starts to take it's toll. And like us, the boys love going to the beach to experience the great outdoors.

The only downside to the beach is the traffic on the roads so we have to keep them chained up for their own protection. However, we bought sturdy metal pegs that screw into the ground and come with long cables that attach to the peg and the dog's harness, so they do have a lot of room to maneouver in the yard.

The boys love going for long walks in the morning and generally wake us at about 6:15 a.m. to be let out and to go for a walk. The only downside to this routine is, if you've had a couple of drinks the night before, you really don't want to be getting out of bed at 6:15. However, that is the responsibility we undertook when we decided to get two dogs, so one or both of us hauls our butt out of bed and takes the boys for their walk. But you know, once you get out there in the c…